Instituto Mesoamericano de Permacultura (IMAP) started in 2000 in San Lucas Tolimán, on the shores of Lake Atitlán in the Mayan highlands of Guatemala.
It was created by a group of Maya Kakchiquel folk with the desire to use native seeds, permaculture, traditional Indigenous knowledge and education to create social healing after 36 years of internal armed conflict that wiped out hundreds of communities and displaced millions from their land and disrupted the transfer of their culture and ancestral knowledge.
IMAP was established to comprehensively address the poverty and malnutrition suffered by indigenous communities in the lake basin as well as throughout the Mesoamerican region, who were disportionately violated during the war and left largely dispossessed following the signing of peace. IMAP’s work revolves around providing communities with access to land, seeds, and excellent permaculture education.
IMAP has trained more than 10,000 smallholder farmers in basic principles of agroecology and seed conservation, increasing the capacity of communities to adapt to climate variability and combating malnutrition by promoting food sovereignty and strengthening the local market.